Up next on News 7--
The nation's largest airline is cutting thousands of jobs.
Meanwhile, President Bush is hosting an economic forum in Texas.
And 200 new jobs are on their way to Salem.
We'll have details.
Hot and humid weather continues across the region with just a slight chance for an afternoon pop up shower or thunderstorm....I'll have you work week forecast.....
News 7 at Noon starts right now...
The Governor's Office is about to announce the creation of 200-new jobs in Salem.
Salem City Council last night agreed to purchase a nearly three acre piece of property on West Main Street for 500- thousand dollars.
The land is currently owned by Virginia Tech, Roanoke College and Habitat for Humanity.
The Governor's Office says the property will be used by U-S Foodservice for a 22-million dollar expansion.
The food distributor already has a center in Salem.
It's expected to build three more buildings, increasing its space by 4-hundred thousand square feet.
US Foodservice chose the Salem site over sites in Maryland, North Carolina and Tennessee.
The Governor's opportunity Fund will provide Salem with 3-hundred thousand dollars to assist in the project.
Another bird with the West Nile virus has turned up in Roanoke.
The health department says it was a crow found along the railroad tracks near 19th Street and Salem Avenue last Thursday.
The bird was sent to the state lab in Richmond for testing, and the results came back yesterday.
It's the third one from Roanoke to test positive for the West Nile virus.
Health officials say they will continue to test dead bluejays, crows and raptors for the virus until ten positive cases are discovered.
If American Airlines is going to be competitive, it's going to have to cut costs--
That's the message from the company's chief executive, who says that's why it's trimming seven- thousand jobs.
The nation's largest airline says the moves will mean more than a billion
dollars in yearly savings.
Word of the cutbacks comes on the heels of U-S Airways' decision to file for Chapter eleven bankruptcy.
American will also replace at least one entire fleet of aircraft for more efficient models.
The airline industry has been struggling since 9-11.
The Fed is meeting today to decide whether interest rates need another trim.
An announcement is scheduled at around 2-15 this afternoon.
Most analysts don't expect any change .
Short term rates are currently at a 40- year low.
But the Fed MIGHT indicate it's more likely to cut rates in the months ahead.
President Bush has gathered business leaders at a university campus in Waco, Texas for what he calls an economic forum.
But his detractors say it's just a glorified photo- op.
Jim Acosta is there.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Jim Acosta/CBS News;]
[OUT Q=Jim Acosta, CBS News.]
(LOCATOR: WACO, TX)
ACCUSED BY CRITICS OF STAGING A TEXAS-SIZED DOG AND PONY SHOW
PRESIDENT BUSH WANTS THIS ONE-DAY FORUM TO SEND THE MESSAGE THAT THE
ECONOMY IS HEADING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION.
SITTING NEXT TO C-E-OS AND AMERICAN WORKERS -- THE PRESIDENT MODERATED
DISCUSSION ON SMALL INVESTOR SECURITY.
BUT IN MINUTES -- MR. BUSH JUMPED OUT OF HIS SEAT IN THAT DEBATE AND
ON TO ANOTHER CHAT ON CREATING JOBS.
THE EVENT IS AIMED AT NOT JUST REVIVING THE ECONOMY BUT ALSO SHIFTING
FOCUS AWAY FROM THE NATIONS BUSINESS SCANDALS AS WELL AS ETHICAL
FOR THE PRESIDENT AND VICE PRESIDENT OVER THEIR CONDUCT AS CORPORATE
MR. BUSH FACES A POLITICAL LANDSCAPE THAT IS EERILY SIMILAR TO THE ONE
PLAGUED HIS FATHER.
POPULAR ON FOREIGN POLICY BUT SHAKIER ON THE ECONOMY THE PRESIDENT
TO SHOW UNEMPLOYED WORKERS AND JITTERY INVESTORS HE FEELS THEIR PAIN.
ACOSTA STAND-UP: DEMOCRATS SAY IT WAS THE ADMINISTRATION THAT
DOWNPLAYED THE PROSPECTS OF THE ECONOMY IN ORDER TO PASS BIG TAX CUTS
AND THAT THE WHITE HOUSE IS SIMPLY FINDING OUT ITS MUCH EASIER TO TALK
DOWN THE ECONOMY THAN IT IS TO TALK IT UP. JA CBS.
A week of heavy rain across parts of Europe has triggered some of the worst flooding in decades.
Mark Phillips has details.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Mark Phillips/CBS News;]
[OUT Q=Phillips, CBS News, London.]
SCRIPT (aerials) ZDF Like an unwelcome summer guest who just won't leave, the high water has come and stayed across central and eastern Europe -- bringing death and misery from Germany to Russia. (Austria/Prague) CZCT/ORF In Austria and the Czech Republic the Danube isn't blue, it's brown and angry -- rising to its highest levels in fifty years. The mayor of Prague ordered a general evacuation of fifty thousand people from the city's historic center early this morning as the Vltava river was expected to crest. (sandbagging) CZCT Frantic sand-bagging isn't expected to hold the water back when the flood peaks later today. Dams in danger of collapse further up the river system have had to be opened to let the raging waters through. (tourists watching) CZCT Tourists who normally flock to the Czech capital to see the city's mediaeval buildings and bridges now wonder whether those structures will survive. Freak, intense summer storms have have already killed more than seventy people across Europe. Some areas are seeing the worst flooding in more than a century. If there's a glimmer of hope in all this, the forecast is for the rains to ease later today, but the flooding will get worse before it gets better. MP CBS News London.))
A 68-year-old man charged with killing a fellow patient at Catawba Hospital last year has been deemed incompetent to stand trial.
Robert Lee VanHook was indicted in April on a second-degree murder charge in connection with the death of Sarah Ann Francisco Lipscomb.
Authorities say a November fight between VanHook and the 88-year-old woman resulted in injuries that led to her death.
A medical examiner has said the injury was consistent with a fall or being pushed against a wall.
According to documents filed in Roanoke County Circuit Court, VanHook has had at least three strokes, dementia and is unable to care for himself.
[HARD MUSIC UNDER]
It is going to cost more to light up a cigarette in Salem. We'll have the details after the break.
But first two separate home explosions leave two people dead and at least 25 injured.
[music up full]
What's believed to be a natural gas explosion at a Connecticut condominium complex killed two people this morning.
At least seven other people were hurt.
[SUPER=03-West Haven, CT;]
Several people were taken to area hospitals, including some children.
The blast leveled the three- unit building-- and shook the rest of the city-- even setting off car alarms several blocks away.
Hundreds of people were evacated for several hours, but most have been allowed back into their homes.
Emergency crews are going through the rubble trying to find out if anyone is still trapped.
Meanwhile ten people were injured after an explosion leveled one home and damaged 20 others in Torrance, California.
The home that was destroyed had been tented for termite fumigation.
The blast left the entire block covered in debris.
One witness says a tremendous bang shook the neighborhood, and flames shot high into the sky.
A pack of cigarettes will soon cost more in the city of Salem.
Last night-- city council voted unanimously to raise the tax on a pack of cigarettes by 15- cents to help fund a school renovation.
But before voting on the ordinance-- Mayor Sonny Tarpley insisted on clearing the air-- saying council's decision was not intended to hit the wallets of a particular group of people.
[inq= I would ]
((I WOULD LIKE TO POINT OUT THAT WE HAVE DOUBLED OUR DECAL TAX FOR THIS YEAR, WE PLACED A CELL PHONE TAX IN THE BUDGET OF THREE DOLLARS WHICH IS CERTAINLY GOING TO AFFECT A LOT OF PEOPLE, WE TOOK A LODGING TAX FROM FIVE PERCENT TO SEVEN PERCENT.))
[SUPER=01-Sonny Tarpley/Salem Mayor;]
[out q= to seven percent.]
Mayor Tarpley says much of the money generated will go toward improvements to Andrew Lewis Middle School.
The 15- cent tax on each pack of cigarettes will go into effect December first.
As cigarette taxes continue to rise, there's word states are losing MILLIONS in tax revenue as more people buy tobacco online.
A federal law requires Internet cigarette sellers to provide states with names and addresses of customers.
States can then pursue the buyers to make sure they pay local sales taxes.
But a new report by the General Accounting Office says most Internet cigarette vendors are ignoring the law.
The report says none of the 147 U-S Web sites that sell cigarettes has posted information saying they comply with the law.
Almost 80 percent admit they don't comply.
The trend could undercut efforts by states to raise revenue by hiking cigarette taxes.
Virginia has the country's lowest cigarette tax at two-and-a-half-cents a pack.
Children have always faced obstacles while growing up--
But today's peer pressures are different from the ones their parents faced.
One man who understands what it's like to give in to peer pressure is former gang member- turned- community leader Michael Chatman, who joins us now via satellite.
Good afternoon, Michael.
[SUPER=01-Michael Chatman/Author and Community Leader;]
(I read that you ran the streets of Miami as a gang member-- how did you manage to turn your life around-- and become s
omeone that kids can look up to?)
(Many parents probably feel helpless to influence their children's decisions about whether to drink or get into trouble
--- But do they have more influence than they think?)
(At what point should parents start talking to their kids about the risks of underage drinking?)
(You've written a book-- and you've also created a guide for parents to help them talk to their kids. Briefly tell us
some of the suggestions that are in there...)
Thank you so much for talking with us, today, Michael.
[FULL PAGE WEB ADDRESS]
If you'd like to order a free copy of the Family Talk About Drinking Guide for parents, you can access the web site through OUR web page, W-D-B-J-7-DOT-COM.
[SOFT MUSIC UNDER]
Coming up next on the newscast, a local firefighter is recognized for his heroism.
Plus the attorney for actress Winnona Ryder says she is being persecuted because she is a celebrity.
[MUSIC UP FULL]
[COMM BREAK #2]
Last night in Salem, a Roanoke County firefighter was honored for his recent heroic actions.
Billy (Crimes) Chrimes was helping crews fight fires out west when he was asked to put his paramedic skills to work.
A fire truck carrying five firefighters went down a mountainside in California-- and Chrimes didn't think twice about doing what he could to help.
The U-S Forest Service, the Virginia Department of Forestry and Roanoke County Fire and Rescue honored Chrimes last night for his dedication.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=There's a close]
((BILLY CHRIMES/ROANOKE CO. PARAMEDIC-FIREFIGHTER; THERE'S A CLOSE BOND WITH THE FIRE SERVICE AND EVEN IF YOU DON'T KNOW SOMEONE IT'S JUST LIKE A BROTHER OR A SISTER SO IT WAS TOUGH KNOWING THAT'S WHO WE WERE WORKING ON BUT IT ALSO KEPT YOU GOING THROUGH IT ALL AND MADE YOU WANT TO WORK THAT MUCH HARDER TO GET THE JOB DONE.))
[SUPER=01-Billy Chrimes/Roanoke Co. Paramedic-Firefighter;]
[OUT Q=job done.]
The truck that tumbled 12- hundred feet down the embankment was carrying five firefighters... only two survived.
Actress Winona Ryder returns to court today in Beverly Hills--
She's expected to enter her plea on felony shoplifting charges.
An employee at Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills testified at her preliminary hearing that she saw Ryder cut security tags off two purses-
Meanwhile, Ryder's lawyer claims the store is targeting her because she is a celebrity-
If convicted of stealing thousands of dollars in merchandise, Ryder could go to prison for two years.
While we're feeling the hot weather here-- some zoo animals in Tokyo are going to chilly extremes.....
It's one of Japan's worst heat- waves in years.
Zoo keepers are giving out large blocks of ice to furry animals to help them stay cool.
Although he lives in an air-conditioned cage, Ling Ling the panda
bear, has been cooling off his paws on huge ice cubes that are studded with pieces of sugar cane, his favorite snack.
Penguins are ALSO keeping close to the ice, perhaps dreaming of returning to their arctic homeland...
On Wall Street at Noon, the DOW was UP 24 points. The NASDAQ has gained ten.
[SPORTS MUSIC UNDER]
Coming up next in sports... a new head coach at Lord Botetourt is new to the post, but familiar with the team..
and we'll see if a local football player is earning his bucks in the N-F-L.
[MUSIC UP FULL]
[COMM BREAK #3]
In today's Friday Football Extra pre-season update- Lord Botetourt is breaking in its new head coach...
Keith Robinson is young and hungry for a victory...
Robinson replaces Tony Hart on the Cavaliers' sideline.
The Radford grad has been an assistant coach and offensive coordinator at Botetourt for the past three seasons.
He says the transition to head coach has been a smooth one.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Keith Robinson/New Botetourt Head Coach; :03]
[OUT Q=can't complain so far."]
Robinson inherits a team that returns eleven starters from a year ago, including 6 on offense and 5 on defense.
(///// SOT /////)
[OUT Q=this year's no exception."]
In pro ball action last night-- the Buccaneers welcomed the Dolphins to town for a preseason match-up...
[SUPER=03-Tampa, FL/ESPN; :00]
The Jon Gruden era began with a bang in Tampa.
The first year coach would watch his return man Frank Murphy take the opening kick- off of the night at the Bucs five, and sprint 95- yards for the touchdown.
Tampa went up 7-nothing.
Ronde Barber was as sharp as ever, making several nice pass defenses.
Henearly brings in the interception underneath Miami receiver Chris Chambers.
Miami got on the board in the second after another Tampa T-D when Cedric Ward catches this Ray Lucas pass.
The Bucs win it, 14-10.
And finally on the links yesterday- Roanoke Country Club hosted the Southwest Virginia club pro tournament, skills challenge, and skins game.
The skills challenge was not really a challenge at all.
Ashley Plantation's Chip Sullivan dominated things against Billy King, Tommy Joyce and Scott Wise.
He won the long- drive competition with a 335- foot blast.
He also won the putting competition and the bunker- shot battle.
But the big winner yesterday was the National Kidney Foundation of the Virginias.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=IT'S A GREAT CAUSE...]
[SUPER=01-Chip Sullivan/Ashley Plantation Pro; :00]
[SUPER=01-Billy King/Blue Hills Pro; :13]
[OUT Q=...THE CAUSE."]
FINAL LOOK AT THE WEATHER
SUPER=X4031; Fax/Copyright Noon/Weekends
[SUPER=X4030; e-Mail/Copyright Noon/Weekends]